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Does US immigration count d no of mos u wer gone fr US on separate trips on the same yr when you apply for ctzenshp?

Maitland, FL |

Im a pr based on derivative asylum, i married a canadian and we are having a baby soon. i have been goin to canada three and two months on different ocassions each year for 2 yrs now to see my wife. its hard coz the validity of the rtd is only a yr. i have to come back to the US to renew it before it expires. Now I worry because the last time i entered US the immigration officer was asking me when im planning to go back to canada. i don't know why he asked me such question. next year, i guess i am eligible to apply for citizenship. am not sure (green card Jan 10, 2010), when can i apply for my citizenship? am worried if the immigration would sum up all my absences to 6 mos. its hard on my part. please help. i need ur advise :( thank u so much.

Attorney Answers 4

Posted

Yes, the do count every day that you're gone.

I'm a bit confused/concerned. You used the letters: "RTD" which normally means Refugee Travel Document ... but, that isn't possible if you have an actual plastic greencard.

You need to meet with a US licensed immigration attorney to properly sort things out.

PROFESSOR OF IMMIGRATION LAW for over 10 years -- This blog posting is offered for informational purposes only. It does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Also, keep in mind that this is an INTERNET BLOG. You should not rely on anything you read here to make decisions which impact on your life. Meet with an attorney, via Skype, or in person, to obtain competent personal and professional guidance.

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Asker

Posted

Yes, sir that is correct. I obtained my green card as an asylee so I use a refugee travel document to travel outside of the united states.

F. J. Capriotti III

F. J. Capriotti III

Posted

If you have an actual plastic greencard, that is the document you should have used to travel with.

Asker

Posted

Yes, i use my green card to enter the united states and I use my rtd to enter canada. They didnt just ask for my gc at the border. They asked for my passport but since I dont have one I gave them my rtd.

Kara Lien Roberts

Kara Lien Roberts

Posted

Just FYI and forgive me if you know this already (most private practitioners do not), but the greencard gets him back in the USA, the RTD gets him into Canada (asylees and refugees should not use passports from their home countries or they risk availment and potential problems with their status). Asylees/refugees have the option of applying for a reentry permit (based on residency and is good for two years) or a RTD. When money is an issue, they tend to go with the RTD because it is cheaper.

Kara Lien Roberts

Kara Lien Roberts

Posted

I should also mention that as a derivative asylee, the availment rules are unlikely to apply to him so he could probably safely use a passport from his home country.

F. J. Capriotti III

F. J. Capriotti III

Posted

Yes, I know that some people use the RTD ... when they really 'should' use the Re-Entry Permit. I agree with Ms. Roberts ... obtaining a passport shouldn't be a bar. But, when a person with LPR status is not 'really' living in the US it can be a real big problem.

Asker

Posted

Thanks for the clarification. I did not apply for a Reentry Permit since I do not have plans of staying out of the country too long. As a permanent resident based on derivative asylum, I have never used my passoport in my travels since ive read a lot of scary stories in immigration forums like being interrogated at the border like criminals. Neverthrless I have no plans of setting a foot on my family's country of persecution.

F. J. Capriotti III

F. J. Capriotti III

Posted

I trust that you will be eligible for naturalization soon and this issue will be a thing of the past. Keep in mind the requirements regarding loss of residence, in addition to the physical presence and residence requirements for naturalization.

Posted

Maintain US resident status is not dependent solely on making trips of less than six months. You need to maintain ties to the US such as driver's license, employment, place of abode , bank accounts etc.

For citizenship there are physical presence requirements as well as two different residence requirements.

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Asker

Posted

i do have a driver's license, a job and a bank account. i just dont know what is the physical requirement for citizenship. thank you sir.

Robert Louis Brown

Robert Louis Brown

Posted

You must be physically present in the US for 1/2 of the statutory period for naturalization plus 1 day.

Asker

Posted

Thank u. :)

Posted

I agree with my colleagues. You owe it to yourself to contact a lawyer, whether myself or one of my colleagues. Good luck to you.

Dean P. Murray
The Murray Law Firm
560 Sylvan Avenue
Englewood Cliffs, NJ 07632
T: (201)875-2600
F: (201)549-8700

Mr. Murray's response is NOT legal advice and does NOT create an attorney-client relationship. You should NOT rely on this response. Mr. Murray's response was generated without conducting a full inquiry as would occur during a face to face attorney-client consultation. It is likely that the response above may be made less accurate, or become entirely inaccurate, as you, i.e. the questioner, disclose additional facts that should only be discussed during a private consultation with an attorney. I strongly recommend that you consult an attorney who is licensed to practice law in your state (or, in the case of immigration law, and attorney in ANY state), whereupon all relevant facts will be discussed. All responses posted by Mr. Murray on Avvo.com are intended as general information for the education of the public, and not for any specific individual.

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Asker

Posted

Thanks for the clarification. I did not apply for a Reentry Permit since I do not have plans of staying out of the country too long. As a permanent resident based on derivative asylum, I have never used my passoport in my travels since ive read a lot of scary stories in immigration forums like being interrogated at the border like criminals. Neverthrless I have no plans of setting a foot on my family's country of persecution.

Posted

I agree with my colleagues. Every day that you are out of the country counts, regardless of whether it was in the same year. You would be wise to have an immigration attorney review your travel history, help you calculate the total time you've been out of the U.S. and identify any other possible problems in your case before you apply for citizenship.

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